The Columbus Crew made two additions to their coaching staff yesterday, hiring Craig Devine as head athletic trainer and John Velasco as equipment manager.
Devine replaces former athletic trainer David Lagow, who filled the position for the past four seasons. He accepted the same position with Orlando City S.C. according to reports.
Devine held this position with the Crew from 2000-2005 and was most recently the Coordinator of Sports Medicine for Elevate Sports Medicine at Memorial Hospital Union County in Marysville, Ohio. He brings more than 27 years of experience back to Columbus, including head athletic trainer for the Columbus Landsharks, physical therapist for the U.S. Olympic Figure Skating Team, and working at Bishop Watterson and Bexley High School.
Devine also has experience in soccer specifically, serving as coach for the Jonathan Alder High School girls' soccer program, Fairbanks High School, and as a club coach for Elite F.C.
Devine holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Therapy and an Associate Degree in Athletic Training from the University of Lowell.
"With Craig we have an experienced trainer in MLS and we're delighted to have him back with the organization," Black and Gold head coach Gregg Berhalter said. "He means a lot to the community and we think he's going to be a good addition to the team.
Velasco replaces former equipment manager Rusty Wummel, who was with the Crew for seven seasons and in the MLS since 1999.
Velasco joins the Black and Gold family from A Creative Force Inc./Nike Soccer where he served most recently as the regional tour manager, assisting in providing training sessions throughout the East Coast. He also worked with the National Youth Combine and spent two seasons as an assistant coach for the Kean University men's soccer program.
Velasco played collegiately at both East Stroudsburg University and Montclair State University. He also spent time with the Ironbound Express (now New Jersey Express) of the Premier Development League. Velasco joined the coaching staff at Montclair after his playing days for one season before coaching at Bloomfield High School and various club teams in New Jersey.
Velasco has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physical Education and Adult Fitness from Montclair.
"In John, we have someone who is motivated to learn this aspect of the job and he's a bright individual who's hard-working and has a good mentality," Berhalter said.
"We believe that both new staff members are strong additions to our club."